- Kyrgyz Government launched Taza Koom, part of Digital Silk Road;
- The Cybershield of Kazakhstan to evolve in two stages;
- Russia continues to discuss the Digital Economy;
- The plans on the digitization of the Eurasian Economic Union were announced;
- Belarus to create a public security monitoring system;
- A Single ID and Authentication System to be used by the Bank of Russia;
- Ukraine postponed the adoption of the cybersecurity law;
- Georgia is launching the state e-petition portal.
1. New Details on the Kyrgyz National ICT Program Released.
Sooronbay Jeenbekov, the Kyrgyz Prime Minister, announced that Taza Koom should help Kyrgyzstan to become an ICT hub in Central Asia through the promotion of open society and digital economy. The government is committed to becoming a key part of the Digital Silk Road and offering a comfortable and safe life for everyone through the online access to governmental services and the country-wide access to the Internet.
The plan will be executed through the opening of a trust fund and engagement of private companies to ensure transparency, especially in projects related to ‘smart cities’.
Meanwhile, the World Bank increased funding of the regional fiber-optic program “Digital CASA” from USD$20 mil. to $50 mil. to improve the Kyrgyz ICT infrastructure and facilitate the implementation of Taza Koom.
DR comments: Experts state that it is the only possible path for the national economy to succeed. Kyrgyzstan has a very good economic potential by becoming a key part of the Digital Silk Road despite some challenges such as slow and expensive Internet, lacking HR, and Soviet-style bureaucracy.
2. The Cybershield of Kazakhstan: What Lies Ahead?
The Kazakh government announced that the implementation of Cybershield of Kazakhstan, a national Information Security (IS) program, will occur in two stages. During the first stage (2017-2018) the plan is to create an expanded law enforcement practice to comply with the newly adopted requirements in the field of IS, develop professional standards and hire more specialists.
During the second stage (2019-2022), Kazakhstani IT companies will begin to occupy key positions in providing the national information and communication infrastructure with IS systems, while domestic enterprises will become the main suppliers of telecom equipment for state bodies.
At the same time, the government will open a Cybersecurity Centre to monitor hacker activities online. The Centre will be subordinated to the Ministry of Defense and its main task will be to prevent online incidents.
Also, the Kazakh authorities concentrate their efforts on combating “toxic” content on the web and countering online terrorist recruiting. These topics were discussed at the InternetCA-2017 conference in Almaty. This means that the regulation of the Internet in Kazakhstan will continue to toughen.
DR comments: DR Analytica already analyzed the advantages and disadvantages of the Cybershield of Kazakhstan. Contact us for more information.
3. Quo Vadis Russia’s Digital Economy?
The national comprehensive ICT project “Digital Economy” was supposed to be published on June 1, however, as of now, this did not happen. The government now expects to announce it in mid-June. Meanwhile, more details on the project become available to the public. For instance, all Russia’s state structures’ databases will be stored in a single centralized cloud storage by 2020.
DR comments: Many questions regarding the program remain unanswered. The biggest concerns about “Digital Economy” are the soundness of the approach, the cost of implementation for details that have been made public, and sources of funding. On June 1, the Prime-Minister Dmitry Medvedev ordered to find sources of funding for the program.
This week, DR Analytica will release a special analysis on the “Digital Economy of Russian Federation” assessing this comprehensive project and its potential outcomes for businesses.
4. Will The Eurasian Economic Union Become Digital?
Tigran Sargsyan, Chairman of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) announced a plan to create common industry markets based on common technological platforms within the framework of EAEU. In order to achieve this goal, member-states would have to develop unified strategies of digital economies. A detailed plan will be developed by November 2017.
5. Public Security or Surveillance Mechanism?
Aleksander Lukashenko, the president of Belarus, signed a decree “On the public security monitoring system.” The main declared goals are public security and social order; prevention and detection of crimes and other offenses; prevention and management of emergencies. The monitoring system will use a software that allows to record events and to conduct an analysis.
In response, the opposition and human rights activists expressed serious concerns fearing that the decree would increase the governmental control over the public activities.
6. The Bank of Russia is Developing a New Security Standard.
The Bank of Russia is planning to authenticate customers using the Single Identification and Authentication System. Corresponding amendments to the law “On Credit History” were submitted to the State Duma. As а result, potential borrowers would not need to visit the bank branch, which may reduce the number of online credit applications. Banks, in turn, would be able to access a client’s credit history electronically, however, only if the client is registered in the system.
7. The Bill on Cybersecurity Did Not Pass in Ukraine.
Ukrainian Parliament postponed the adoption of the bill on Cybersecurity. The document was sent for a repeated second reading. The main reason appears to be a lack of compromise on the amendments that may affect the work of Prozorro’s electronic public procurement system. According to our sources, there is a continuing confrontation between the government and the Vidrodzhennya faction, representing some oppositional oligarchs, over the state procurement system control.
8. Georgia Will Introduce a New Service in June 2017.
The Georgian government will launch the ichange.gov.ge portal to involve citizens in the socio-political life of the country and increase transparency of official transactions. Going forward, citizens who wish to make a petition or sign it need to register specifying the name, ID number, e-mail, cell number, and password.